Jasper’s Woodland Caribou – Maligne Herd

Updated November 13, 2013

Woodland Caribou, Maligne herd, Maligne pass, 2002 Jasper National Park

Woodland caribou – Maligne herd near Maligne Pass 2002 – Image by George Mercer

The Maligne herd of Jasper’s woodland caribou is now down to only five animals – two females and three males. Both the females are collared. The big bull that was with them last year has disappeared along with one female. But a new younger bull has joined the group. Does this mean that there is some interaction with either the Tonquin herd in the west or the Brazeau herd further south? Maybe the DNA in the droppings that were collected this fall will tell us when they are analyzed in the coming months.

In the meantime Parks Canada is waiting for a proposal from  Maligne Tours who want to build a high-end hotel and tent cabins in the heart of caribou habitat at Maligne Lake.  If this is allowed to proceed to the next stage Parks Canada needs to hear from everyone concerned about this threatened species whose protection may not even be assured in a national park.

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